Branches of Microbiology
• Bacteriology: the study of bacteria.
• Immunology: the study of the immune system. It looks at the relationships between pathogens such as bacteria and viruses and their hosts.
• Mycology: the study of fungi, such as yeasts and molds.
• Nematology: the study of nematodes (roundworms).
• Parasitology: the study of parasites. Not all parasites are microorganisms, but many are. Protozoa and bacteria can be parasitic; the study of bacterial parasites is usually categorized as part of bacteriology.
• Phycology: the study of algae.
• Protozoology: the study of protozoa, single-celled organisms like amoebae.
• Virology: the study of viruses.
By Type of Research
Microbiology research, like other fields of scientific research, can be subdivided into the categories of pure and applied. Pure (or basic) research is exploratory and conducted in order to better understand a scientific phenomenon, while applied research is based on information gleaned from pure research and used to answer specific questions or solve problems.
Pure microbiology research includes:
• Astromicrobiology: the study of the origin of life on Earth, and the search for extraterrestrial life.
• Evolutionary microbiology: the evolution of microorganisms.
• Cellular microbiology: the study of the structure and function of microbial cells.
• Microbial ecology
• Microbial genetics
• Microbial physiology
• Systems microbiology: mathematical/computational modeling of the activities of microbiological systems.
While applied microbiology research includes:
• Agricultural microbiology: the study of microorganisms that interact with plants and soils.
• Food microbiology: the study of microorganisms that spoil food or cause foodborne illnesses. Can also study how microorganisms are used in food production, such as fermentation of beer.
• Medical microbiology: the study of microorganisms responsible for human disease.
• Microbial biotechnology: using microbes in industrial or consumer products.
• Pharmaceutical microbiology: the study of microorganisms used in pharmaceutical products, such as vaccines and antibiotics.
Journal of Bioremediation & Biodegradation